So you’ve worked hard these past 15 years, diligently saving most of your money so that you have the optionality of retiring before the age of 40. You’re dreading doing the same old thing for another 3+ years and discover How To Engineer Your Own Layoff.
After digesting the information, you develop courage and execute the framework to produce a severance package valued at three years of living expenses. It’s as if you’ve worked until 40 but managed to save three years of your life and quit at age 37 instead. Now what?
Spend your money of course!
One of the biggest mistakes a retiree can make is not spending their money. An early retiree is so accustomed to saving that it becomes ingrained to continue saving for retirement, even though s/he is already retired! You should theoretically spend 100% of your income every month and live it up! Alas, the process of saving money is almost an impossible habit to break. Maybe I can help!
THREE TIPS FOR HOW TO SPEND YOUR MONEY
1) Say no to spoiled offspring. As a result of not spending, we don’t maximize the exchange value of our money and die with too much. Sure it’s nice to leave some for the kids in a trust. But, you don’t want deadbeat kids now do you? If I knew I had a million dollars waiting for me by the time I turned 25, it is unlikely I would have worked so hard to accumulate my first million by 27. I probably would have taken a year off after college to travel the world and then work at a coffee shop in Hawaii, which sounds pretty good actually! One friend new she stands to inherit $1.5 million after taxes and is now entering her 10th year as a PhD student!
2) Extract true value from paper. Money is but a medium of exchange. Unless you love making paper airplanes out of hundred dollar bills, you really can’t do anything with the actual money you’ve saved. I remember getting absolutely sick of seeing the savings account grow after three years post college. Due to savings, I became demotivated because I had more than I needed. As a result, I bought a condo in SF and got motivated again because I had something nice to pay off. Money became valuable again, because it had a purpose.
3) Save the world with joy. Given you are retired, you can now spend more time saving the world. You can give away your money or volunteer your time now that you have more of it. I’ve got a better idea for you. How about saving the world by going to the place that needs your money most? Last year I took a two week cruise that stopped in Venice, Santorini, Mykonos, Olympia, Istanbul, Kortula and a few other places that really needed capital. I spent about $10,000 during this time, which hopefully multiplies into a $30,000 positive affect on the economy! Coincidence the markets started rallying again in November of 2011? Maybe, maybe not!
HOW I PLAN TO HELP SAVE THE WORLD WITH JOY
The European debt crisis is really starting to drag. Millions of retirement accounts are at risk of losing billions in value thanks to the indebtedness of our European brothers. Imagine if 100 million working Americans decided to go to Europe for just a week vacation each and spend $2,000 each? That’s $200 BILLION dollars worth of capital that will be injected by the private sector in just one week!
$200 billion of non taxpayer money would surely jump start Europe’s economy don’t you think? I believe so, which is why I’ve booked a 2.5 week vacation for two.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Warnemunde (Berlin) Germany
St. Petersburg, Russia
Nynashamn, Sweden (Stockholm)
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The vacation for two will cost about $12,000.
Airfare: $3,000 (keeping it real with economy)
Cruise: $5,000 (12 nights balcony suite)
Excursions: $2,000 (want to see as much as possible at each stop)
Hotel: $1,200 (five nights)
Food: $800 (five nights on land as cruise is all you can eat)
Hence, if 100 million Americans each spend $6,000 while in Europe, we could inject $600 BILLION dollars worth of capital into the continent! An injection of this magnitude would probably shore up investor confidence, which would lead to increased production and hiring by corporates, which would lead to a surge in stock market performance that will make you way more than $6,000 per person!
Not only will you make all your money back in the stock market, you’ll have a bloody good time in the process!
ALWAYS CREATE MULTIPLE WIN SCENARIOS IN RETIREMENT
One of the key tenets of How To Engineer Your Layoff is creating a positive scenario for your employer to lay you off. You can either convince them that laying you off will bring them more profitability in the future, or perhaps take advantage of their panic and desire to cost cut in exchange for giving you a healthy severance package. Do not try either of these strategies before reading the book. There are many more strategies you should employ first!
Here are the multiple win scenarios for going to Europe:
* See nine new countries/cities.
* Inject badly needed capital into Europe.
* Test out working abroad for almost three weeks.
* Develop new blog content for upcoming posts.
* Play around with new retirement spending habits.
* Crystallize the value of my separation package.
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- Earn 50,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s a ~$650 value right there.
- Named a ‘Best Credit Card’ for Travel Rewards by MONEY Magazine.
- You get 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
Manage Your Finances In One Place: It’s now more important than ever to get a handle on your finances since you no longer have that main source of day job income. Sign up with Personal Capital, a free online platform which aggregates all your financial accounts in one place so you can see where you can optimize. Before Personal Capital, I had to log into eight different systems to track 28 different accounts (brokerage, multiple banks, 401K, etc) to manage my finances.
Now, I can just log into Personal Capital to see how my stock accounts are doing, how my net worth is progressing, and where my spending is going. The best feature is the 401K Fee Analyzer which has saved me over $1,000 a year in portfolio fees I had no idea I was paying. Personal Capital takes less than one minute to sign up and is the most valuable tool I’ve found to help people stay on top of their money in retirement.
They’ve also come out with their incredible Retirement Planning Calculator that uses your linked accounts to run a Monte Carlo simulation to figure out your financial future. You can input various income and expense variables to see the outcomes. Definitely check to see how your finances are shaping up as it’s free.
Photo: Grand Canal, Venice. Updated for 2017.